Children & Adolescents Clinic

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Clinical Reference Systems: Pediatric Advisor 10.0
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Well Child Care at 9 Months


Your baby should continue having breast milk or infant formula until he is 1 year old. Most babies now take 6 to 8 ounces of formula 4 times a day. Encourage your child to drink formula and juice from a cup now. This is a good time to begin weaning from the bottle.

You can begin adding meat to your child's diet.

By now your child probably has one or more teeth. After meals and before bedtime, try to wash off the teeth with a clean cloth.

Development and Discipline

Babies are starting to pull themselves up to stand. They love to bang things together to make sounds. They may start to say "dada" and "mama."

At this age, babies learn what "no-no" means. Saying "no" calmly and firmly and either taking away what your child is getting into or removing them from the situation is a good way to teach what "no" means. If your child continues to do what you told him not to do, you can put your baby in a playpen for 1 minute without any toys or attention from you.

Give your baby a choice of toys to play with and praise him for whichever one he chooses. During play you can give lots of kisses and hugs. Peek-a-boo is a favorite game.

For more information see: Normal Development: 9 Months


A regular bedtime hour and routine are important. Babies enjoy looking at picture books. You may want to read one regularly with your child. A favorite blanket or stuffed animal may help your baby feel secure at bedtime. If your baby wakes up a lot at night, ask your doctor or nurse for advice.

Safety Tips

Car Seat Safety

If your child reaches 20 pounds and is still riding in an infant seat, it is time for a new car seat. Some car seats can convert from a backwards-facing infant seat to a forward-facing toddler seat. Carefully follow the manufacturer's instructions when installing new or converting old car seats for your child. For more information you can call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 1-800-424-9393.

Avoid Choking and Suffocation

  • Avoid foods on which a child might choke (such as candy, hot dogs, popcorn, peanuts).
  • Cut food into small pieces.
  • Store toys in a chest without a dropping lid.

Prevent Fires and Burns

  • Practice your fire escape plan.
  • Check your smoke detector. Replace the batteries if necessary.
  • Put plastic covers in unused electrical outlets.
  • Keep hot appliances and cords out of reach.
  • Keep all electrical appliances out of the bathroom.
  • Don't cook with your child at your feet.
  • Use the back burners on the stove with the pan handles out of reach.
  • Turn your water heater down to 120 degrees F (50 degrees C).

Prevent Drowning

  • Never leave an infant or toddler in a bathtub alone -- NEVER.
  • Continuously supervise your baby around any water, including toilets and buckets. Infants can drown in a bucket that has water in it. Empty all water and store buckets turned over.

Avoid Falls

  • Make sure windows are closed or have screens that cannot be pushed out.
  • Don't underestimate your child's ability to climb.

Prevent Poisoning

  • Keep all medicines, vitamins, cleaning fluids, and gardening chemicals locked away or disposed of safely.
  • Install safety latches on cabinets.
  • Keep the poison center number on all phones. The poison control number is ________________.
  • Ask your doctor about syrup of Ipecac. Use it only if you are told to do so.

Avoid Cuts

  • Remove or pad furniture with sharp corners.
  • Keep sharp objects out of reach.

Next Visit

Your baby's next routine visit should be at the age of 12 months. Please bring your shot card at that time.

Written by Robert Brayden, M.D.
Copyright 1999 Clinical Reference Systems